bizEDGE NZ - Kiwi competition aims to stimulate economic involvement & innovation in Māori

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Kiwi competition aims to stimulate economic involvement & innovation in Māori

DIGMYIDEA aims to inspire more Māori to engage in the digital economy by helping emerging Māori innovators turn their creative ideas into reality.

Auckland Tourism Events and Economic Development (ATEED) General Manager Business, Innovation and Skills, Patrick McVeigh, says DIGMYIDEA entries must be exciting, innovative, digital and entrepreneurial.

He explains that they can be anything from an app to a web programme, or even a digital extension of a more traditional business.

“Ideas should have the potential to create economic opportunities for Māori and other New Zealanders, as well as be considered for the export market,” says McVeigh.

“DIGMYIDEA aims to stimulate the interest and involvement of Māori within New Zealand’s innovation ecosystem, which is an important part of building the technology sector, and a unique point of difference both at home and on the world stage,” he adds.

Teams of up to five, or individuals can enter the competition with $10,000 worth of business start-up assistance going to the overall winning entries in two categories:

  • Mauri oho: youth category (15-25 year olds)
  • Mauri tū: open category (26 year olds and above)

Brittany Teei won the competition in 2015, she encourages people to be open-minded about entering the competition and to enjoy the experience.

“I didn’t know much about the tech sector when I entered my idea, Kids Coin; a digital literacy platform designed to teach kids about money in the classroom. DIGMYIDEA gave me the opportunity to build new networks and relationships with people in the industry,” she says.

Since launching two years ago, Kids Coin is now used in classrooms across Auckland and in the Cook Islands, and Brittany says they’ve even had interest in San Francisco.

“My advice to DIGMYIDEA entrants is to make sure you research your business idea thoroughly, learn as much as you can about your competitors, and have some fun,” concludes Teei.

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